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Hi i recently purchased a Samick Sage 45# @ 28". Im new to traditional archery. My next step is picking up the right arrows. Then whats the steps from there? I heard of bareshaft tuning? Not sure what it is ive read a little about it. Is it basically the same thing as paper tuning? I used to paper tune with my compound. Im just OCD (obsessive compulsive) and want the best and straightest arrow flight and setup. Any comments appreciated.
 

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I would order a single .600 spine and a single .500 spine carbon arrow from Lancaster archery supply. One of these will work depending on the weight tips you use and how long you leave them. If you are drawing past 28" you might need a .400 spine.

What I do is shoot bareshaft until I get an arrow shooting well. If you are right handed and a bareshaft flies nock right - the arrow is too stiff - you can fix this by using a heavier tip, using a weaker spined arrow, or using the same spine but keeping it longer. If the arrow flies nock left - the arrows are too weak - you can fix this by using a lighter tip, shortening the arrow, or using a siffer spined arrow.

when you bareshaft - don't worry about impact - watch or have someone else watch the arrow in flight - also start with your nock point high - after you get the nock left/right issues solved then slowly move your nock point down till you get rid of most or all of the nock high flight - the reason for this is that a nock too low can give false nock right/left readings.

After you get an arrow flying right bareshaft - then I fletch them and shoot thorugh paper from 6-8 feet away and make minor adjustments in nock point location and silencer placement - if the arrow tears the paper nock right (too stiff) - move the silencers closer to the tips of the limbs - if it tears nock left (too weak) move the silencers closer to the nock point or center of the string.

good luck
 

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hamm -

How's this for a primer:

How and why do we tune our bows


This question comes up in several forms from time to time, so I thought it would be a good idea to give an overview about tuning a stickbow. Why, when and how.

First thing we have to understand that a bow, ANY bow, be it a longbow, recurve, compound or crossbow, regardless of how well or poorly tuned when strapped to a shooting machine will stack 12 IDENTICAL arrows all day long. (That’s providing the physical properties of the bow or environmental conditions don’t change during the session.)

Notice I didn’t say that the arrows will necessarily come out flying straight, nor will they necessarily hit where you want, only that they will behave exactly the same way. That’s kind of a basic law of physics.

First question: So why are we tuning our “stuff”?

Well, most of us would like our arrows to come out of the bow straight, and it’s not unreasonable to want them to hit what we’re aiming at – at least most of the time.

A clean (or straight) arrow flight means that the least amount of energy is wasted by the arrow trying to steer or correct itself. The less energy wasted, the more is available downrange. That translates into extended effective range. If you’re a target archer, that means greater accuracy at longer distances and if you’re a, bowhunter, not only can it give better accuracy, but better penetration as well.

It also means that the bow/arrow combination will be more tolerant of minor shooter error. Remember I said above that our hypothetical bow was strapped to a shooting machine? Despite some reports to the contrary, we as archers ain’t shooting machines. So a little tuning does help – more on that when we talk about the “when” part.

Second question: When should you worry about tuning?

Only answer is when you’re ready. Going back to our shooting machine scenario, the bow is a constant and the arrows are theoretically identical so in the real world, except for environmental changes (read: wind), WE are the only variable. The best archers in the world can’t match the consistency of a shooting machine. The greater the inconsistencies in a shooter’s form, the less reliable his tuning data. Aiming aside, things like inconsistent anchor points, unstable bow arms and even apparently minor things like string weight distribution on each finger, pressure point of the bow hand on the bow, minor or major shooter induced torque, etc. affect the arrow’s flight and point of impact. That’s why we keep saying that you can only tune as well as you can shoot.

As an example, here’s how I tune an Olympic bow for a new shooter:

1. Set the brace height somewhere within the manufacturer’s specs (if you have the right string, that’s usually a no-brainer)

2. Stiffen the plunger, so it is effectively a strike plate (removes a variable)

3. Set the plunger so that the arrow tip is to the left of the string, for a right handed shooter (provides adequate paradox if the right arrows are chosen – and I’m usually suggesting the arrows )

4. Set the ARROW NOCK approximately 1/8” above perpendicular to the string and place the nocking point above the arrow nock.

5. Confirm that tiller is between 0/0 to 1/4” lower limb strong (again, that’s usually the factory default)

6. Have the guy test the bow. If the arrows APPEAR to be coming out straight, THAT’S IT!

That set up will usually last for about 3 – 6 months, until the shooter’s form solidifies. Oddly enough, more often than not, those standard parameters usually prove to be either spot on or very close once formal tuning is performed.

Third Question: OK, so how do we tune the thing?

Actually there are several methods and all have their place.

1. Visual inspection. Do the fletched arrows appear to be coming out and flying straight? Yes, that’s what we did a while back and actually has merit. Gross tuning corrections can be made on that basis for new shooters.

2. Paper tuning with the paper frame at 15’ can serve as a ballpark estimation once form is fairly consistent. Note the term ballpark; I only use that method when the shooter doesn’t have any bare shafts – hey it happens.

3. Bare shaft tuning, still the gold standard. I start at 10 yds for a sanity check (just to make sure the un-fletched arrows aren’t going to go ballistic), then more formal tuning at 20 yds. (That’s why I say that you really need some kind of a recognizable group at 20 yds before you can tune successfully.) While the planing method (relative impact points of bare shafts to fletched ones) is the rule, I’ve found that nock kick-out (angle of the arrow in the target) corrects itself as the bare shafts are brought to coincide with the fletched ones.

Basic rule of thumb for a right-handed shooter: a stiff bare shaft will impact left of fletched ones with a right nock end kick-out, and a weak one to the right, with a left nock kick-out. Bare shafts above the fletched ones means you have to raise your nocking point and bare shafts below your fletched ones means lower it.

4. Beyond that, we are really getting into things like walkback tuning (for plunger tension tuning) or bare shafting at extended ranges. Both of those techniques are more applicable to Olympic bows and more experienced shooters.

Anyhow, hope that took some of the mystery out of tuning. It’s not that hard to do and the benefits are significant once the shooter is capable of exploiting them.

BTW - 45# is a bit heavy for a first stickbow, and without decent and consistent from, tuning is basically unless.

Viper1 out.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks everyone again for replies. I forgot to mention i have been shooting a cheap 30# @28" bear recurve bow. I feel like i have alot of basics down. It can always be improved. The 30# i can hold back all day if i wanted. What im wanting now is a decent or a real bow that after practice and practice and tuning lots of tuning i could possibly hunt with. If and only if i was confident enough in my shooting NOT to injure game. That is my worst fear. Thank you again Viper1 that made tuning alot clearer. I am left handed shooter though. Does the nock kick-out to the right still mean too stiff of spine or is it reversed for left hand? Meaning if im a left handed shooter if i have the nock tearing to the paper on the right does that mean too stiff? Nock end point to the left too weak? Or is it reversed for a left handed shooter?
 

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hamm -

All the horizontal stuff is reversed for lefties, (and the vertical stuff isn't ;) ).

Still 45# is a 15# jump. Give it a try, but keep the 30# one around and make sure that you can maintain the same form on both.

Viper1 out.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Haha thanks, yea i also forgot i have a 66" longbow thats #55 @28" a friend of mine hes a bowyer he actually made it and gave it to me. I havent been able to talk to him in a while. However that #55 is just way too much to comfortably shoot and learn. Anyways i have played around with that bow as well. I think 45 might be a good start. Yea i will have them both here as well im not getting rid of them. I anchor with my middle finger to the corner or my mouth (or finger tip i should say.) Is this a good anchor? This is great NOT only can i NOT find any stores that have many if any left hand bows to even try. Tuning it is always ass backward haha
 

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hamm -

It's really not a great anchor, as the corner of mouth is soft tissue and can move around, so the "anchor" can become a variable. If you can make your finger tip contact with a tooth (upper jaw), jaw bone or cheek bone, the bone to bone lock up is more secure. Holler back or PM me if you'd like to try something different.

Yeah, my best student is a south paw, and whenever we start discussing shot analysis, he always has to remind me, "You remember I'm left handed, right?". Sometimes, I think it's worse for the coaches. :tongue:

Viper1 out.
 
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